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Katie Allison Granju is the married mother of five children, ranging in age from toddler to teenager. In addition to blogging for Babble Voices, she also publishes her own blog, Big Good Thing, and she works full time in digital media with a large cable network. When she isn't at work, blogging, or washing someone's socks, Katie enjoys working in her flower garden, riding her bike, and feeding the chickens she keeps in the backyard of her family's large and totally impractical, 113-year-old Victorian house.

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Suddenly, I’m golden (but y’all try not to be TOO jealous)

By Katie Allison Granju |

Ever since that little incident a few months back – you know, that time I became trapped inside my Honda Odyssey minivan and barely escaped a raging flash flood, all while on my lunch hour from work?  Yeah that one. Well, ever since then, I’ve been driving my my mother in law’s loaned – and STYLIN’ – Taurus wagon around town (thanks Janice!).

Our post-flood car hunt has been challenging. We needed to find a car we could buy supercheap at this particular moment in time, and it needed to be a minivan, since there are a lot of us in our family, including C and G in carseats that have to be secured into place with more anchors and locks than Fort Knox. Moving carseats around doesn’t work. I can’t ever get them put in right. They need to be installed properly and then stay put. Plus, the whole taking two separate cars whenever the whole family needs to go somewhere at the same time has gotten really old, really fast.

But our budget for a replacement vehicle has been….ummm…how to say this delicately yet clearly?…Extremely small.

See, we are currently trying to dig out from under the past 24 months of calamitous events in our lives, many involving huge medical bills, and that means no car payment for us right now. Cash only.

Since I really don’t care one iota what I drive as long as it’s safe and we all fit in it, and since I HATE shopping for cars, I authorized Jon to find and buy the new family truckster with no input from me.

Thus, I am informed by phone just now that my husband and Dr. Neighbor are currently downtown at the Brewpub (yes, Dr. Neighbor is temporarily back in town, getting innoculated for his upcoming trip to Ecuador) toasting the savvy purchase they’ve just made of a new vehicle for me. Well, Jon bought it, but Dr. Neighbor advised and consulted.

Apparently, I am now the proud owner of the finest GOLDEN minivan that the $3,000 we were able to scrape together money can buy… That’s right, my new ride is a SOLID GOLD, 2001 Chrysler Town ‘n’ Country. Doesn’t that sound fancypants? Just say it out loud to yourself, with the emphasis where it belongs…“Katie now drives a GOLDEN Town ‘n’ Country!”

Now say it more slowly with a sort of Thurston Howell, III lockjaw thing going on. EVEN FANCIER.

The guys assure me that the “mild to moderate” hail damage does not in any way detract from my new GOLDEN minivan’s cachet.

I’m thinking that with my new gold-plated ride, I will remind everyone who sees me tooling around town of Charlton Heston in Ben Hur. No, not because I am tall, handsome, or speak in a dramatic baritone. And not because I’m a gun nut. No, it will be because just like a fleet and shiny chariot, my dimpled, yet GOLDEN Chrysler minivan will be something that everyone else  in my neighborhood will surely covet when we are all stopped at the red light on Broadway at the same time, you know, that one next to Dollar General, the Fellini Kroger and the Bad Times Taco Bell?



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About Katie Allison Granju


Katie Allison Granju

Katie Allison Granju is the married mother of five children, ranging in age from toddler to teenager. In addition to blogging for Babble Voices, she also publishes her own blog, Big Good Thing. Katie also enjoys working in her flower garden, riding her bike, and feeding the chickens she keeps in the backyard of her family's large Victorian house. Read bio and latest posts → Read Katie Allison's latest posts →

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19 thoughts on “Suddenly, I’m golden (but y’all try not to be TOO jealous)

  1. Noelle says:

    Um, hysterical. And Dr Neighbor is going to Ecuador? Driving? In the Van?? ;)
    Will he blog about that?

  2. Catherine says:

    I can’t wait to see it! I’m SO coming over this weekend!

  3. Clisby says:

    Photos! Where are the photos?

  4. Debbie in Memphis says:

    Can’t wait for the pictures!! And those GOLDEN dimples are good for your gas mileage…at least, according to Mythbusters :-D

  5. Melissa says:

    HA! Love it. YAY for the new car – that will definitely make life easier : )

  6. Katy E says:

    Oh man, you should totally hot glue mardi-gras beads all over it. It would be awesome in a “Big Don’s Costume Shop/elegant junk/ Myrtle’s Mess” kind of way. It could bridge the gap between Old North Knoxville and South Knox better than the Henley Street Bridge ever could.

  7. Debbie says:

    Quick – we need pictures!

  8. Jen says:

    I am pretty jealous, to be honest! I had the 11 yo Odyssey that was totaled while parked out front of our house by a hit and run driver, just before Christmas.

    After two months with one car, we decided it just wasn’t doable and replaced the van. Fast forward to yesterday, when our left rear bumper was smashed in — while oldest brother (20) was kindly driving youngest bro to a class. Not his fault, no one injured, other person gave all info and there was kind person working outside his house who gave all his info as a witness.

    BUT STILL. What’s with all the crashing and smashing?! I wish we’d found a dimpled golden oldie instead of trying to create one out of a new car!

  9. Annie S. says:

    Oh my gosh this post was so funny! Of course I had to read the highlighted posts too. The bad times taco bell is hilarious! In the comments your mom talks about the mexican place in Huntsville which has to be El Palacio. It is STILL there!

  10. Michelle Shory says:

    So funny! Well, my scraped up maroon Acura with nearly 200,000 miles is also a sweet ride.

  11. CMW says:

    well, I wish I could say I didn’t have a car payment (or two!). Rock on, you are smarter than me…

  12. Ruth says:

    Congrats to the HickJu gang on your new “Golden Grrrl”!

    And will you be following in Dr. Neighbor’s … tire tracks (see how I did that there, LOL?) and naming your new wheels as well? It’ll be mighty hard to top “Westfalia Walden”, but go for it!

    Pimp that ride, Katie — but please drive safely and avoid all flash floods from here on out, okay? :-)

  13. Kata says:

    Pictures plz! :)

  14. Eskimo says:

    2 words.

    Spinning rims.

  15. Jane says:

    I drive a Golden Honda Accord!!
    We can be the Golden Girls!!

  16. erika says:

    meaningless story with out photos.

  17. Claire R says:

    Proud owner of a 2001 Taurus wagon with 180,000 miles on it. My car got flooded last summer, and then we had weeks and weeks of high 90′s heat. All the pleather inside the doors is hanging down now…the steam from the carpets in the high heat melted all the glue. We are both stylin’!

  18. Gaby says:

    hey, I own a GOLDEN town & country as well!! and love it.

  19. Shelley says:

    The most ridiculous car I ever owned was a giant Lincoln Continental that somehow we wound up with from my grandfather’s estate. That thing was so not our generation, style, or politics that once the service guy at the Lincoln place laughed at us (that’s your car? he sputtered while trying to quell the giggles). It was also the lemon of the year, too, despite being reasonably new. The suspension system (you know, that makes you feel like you’re riding on a cloud of air) failed, and we got rid of it/1

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